San Diego Comic-Con 2013 – Day One

Welcome to San Diego Comic-Con 2013
The 2013 San Diego Comic-Con welcomes its totally psyched conventioneers!

3AM, that’s right 3AM wake up. Which means no sleep really. But so what, I’m going to San Diego Comic-Con!!!

After months of planning, weeks of organizing, days of packing, and hours of last minute details to wrap-up, the day has finally arrived!

My Comic-Con buddy, Joel, crashed at my place so we could get to Logan airport together. I give my wife a kiss goodbye, and then Joel and I hop into the livery transport at 4AM.

We’re on our way!

Yeah, we’re tired but we’re psyched too.

After a quick check-in and going through security, we get on the plane.

Some 8 hours later (after a connection in DC), we land in San Diego—and the weather is absolutely beautiful. Ironically, here in southern California the temp is a comfortable 70 degrees, where in Boston it’s a sweltering 90+!

So we hook up with the other member of our party, Pete, and head to the hotel.

We drop our stuff and hoof it to the convention center.

And here’s where the fun begins…

Already, we see people dressed up in costume coming and going all around: Supergirl, anime characters, Green Lantern, Xena, etc.

As we get closer to the convention center, there’s a plethora of outdoor activities going on in the nearby parks.

I walk by a giant inflatable float of Axe Cop—like something out of a dark version of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade!

Giant Axe Cop float at San Diego Comic-Con 2013.
You won’t see this in NYC on Turkey Day!

There’s a whole exhibit for a new Viking television show with women dressed up as Valkyrie warriors, and a mockup of the new Bates Motel! A brand new show produced by A&E.

Then we finally get to the convention center and the sea of people in costumes and such are too numerous to describe. So you’ll have to check out the pics!

Great Future Soldier costume at San Diego Comic-Con 2013.
The most intense cosplayers come to San Diego Comic-Con!


Nick Iandolo stands next to a full-size Han Solo frozen in carbonite.
If you look closely, you’ll see me in the carbonite—not!

We get in and get our badges. And then it’s time to get the lay of the land.

And what a land it is!

The giant, and I mean giant, exhibit hall is like 2 or 3 football stadiums long and wide! And it’s filled with everything from pop culture, movies, comics, you name it!

Godzilla’s a big thing this year so there’s lots of Godzilla stuff going around. Including buildings in and around the convention center that are painted to look like he just attacked them!

The Godzilla pavilion (actually the Legendary Pictures pavilion that is producing the new Gareth Edwards Godzilla movie for 2014) is packed with people looking to get tickets to The Godzilla Encounter—which I hear is unbelievable! There’s even a glimpse of Godzilla’s head that is true life-size—I have to check this out before I leave Comic-Con!

Anyway, we start talking to a bunch of people and we come across some guys from Gamespot. They’re interviewing people; we decide to do a mutual interview of each other.

After that we walk around a bit—there’s just too much to see!

However, there’s one thing that we’re determined to catch: the Ender’s Game panel with none other than Harrison Ford! This is his second appearance at Comic-Con.

So we’re thinking that since the panel is in the infamous Hall H, we’re never going to get in. No one gets into Hall H. Last year I posted a story for Motif called A Tale of Two Cons. In it, I talk about how I waited around for 4 ½ hours at the 2012 San Diego Comic-Con to get into Hall H for The Hobbit panel (with Peter Jackson and the entire cast!) to NOT get in!

This year, a miracle happened!

We walked right in!


We got in no problem, had to sit through two panels: one on the new YA movie Divergent, and the other with three directors (Alfonso Cuarón, Children of Men; Marc Webb, The Amazing Spiderman; and Edgar Wright, Three Flavours Cornetto trilogy). All good stuff. And then we were rewarded with the Ender’s Game panel!

The director Gavin Hood, the producer Roberto Orci, Asa Butterfield (who plays Ender Wiggin), and of course Harrison Ford (who plays Colonel Graff) all showed up.

Harrison Ford on the 'Ender's Game' panel at San Diego Comic-Con 2013.
I was only 150 feet from Han Solo/Indiana Jones! OMG!

It was a great panel and we got to see EXCLUSIVE footage from the upcoming movie that no one’s ever seen before!

That’s that stuff I love about Comic-Con!

And finally there were audience questions.

The most memorable being directed to Harrison Ford: “If Han Solo and Indiana Jones met, what would they say to each other?”

To which a bewildered Harrison Ford replied, “Ah… hi… how are you?”


After that, we headed out of the convention center to see what was around.

I checked out these giant inflatable Dragon Ball Z characters, a real actual Scooby Doo Mystery Machine van, a REAL pirate ship in the marina promoting Assassin’s Creed, and a life-size Lego model of Bilbo Baggins’ Hobbit hole with Bilbo, Gandalf, and all the dwarves from The Hobbit movies!

The Scooby-Doo Mystery Machine van in real life at San Diego Comic-Con 2013!
Scooby-Doo’s in there! Really! He is!
Lego replica of Bilbo Baggins' home Bag End from 'The Hobbit' at San Diego Comic-Con 2013
I’m pretty sure this shows up in the next ‘Hobbit’ movie!


And there’s still more…

Later that day we got some free drinks and food at the Gamespot Basestation Bar, and the MTV2 Party In The Park (right outside Petco Park) sites!

Main stage for MTV2 Party in the Park celebration at San Diego Comic-Con 2013.
Free food, free drinks, great music! The party never ends at San Diego Comic-Con!

And after all that, and being up for almost 24 hours, it was time to crash at the hotel…

On to Day Two baby!